"A brand's value is not fixed in isolation; it is as much a consequence of the merger or acquisition and the subsequent business strategy of the merged entity as it is an input to them. That's why the risk extends beyond just ignoring a brand's value; the potentially bigger risk is valuing a brand in a way that has no relation to how you plan to use it in the new business. The result could be a big future write-down or an equally big constraint on the future business strategy."
The solution? Gauge value by how the brands will affect demand; tie the brand strategy firmly to the business strategy; and develop and manage the brand transition plan.
"[Aquirers] have to push brand valuations beyond assumed dollar values and well beyond simply assessments of image and awareness."
-"Bringing Brand into the M&A Discussions," by Suzanne Hogan, COO, and senior partners Simon Glynn and James Bell, Lippincott Mercer, Mercer Management Journal, No. 20